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Some of you may have received a duplicate November 13th JONline on Friday. I apologize for the inconvenience.


Our Thanksgiving holiday might look a little different this year, but this week as I take time to reflect, there are some folks I’d like to recognize. First, I’d like to thank all the health care workers and others on the front line of this pandemic. Last week we heard a lot about the struggle hospitals and care facilities across Wisconsin are facing, and the situation is truly dire. To thank them and to honor them, let’s all do our part to stay home, wash our hands, keep 6 feet of distance and mask up!


Next, I’d like to thank the election workers and clerks across Wisconsin who persevered through unprecedented circumstances to administer their elections safely and accurately. Now, in the throes of the worst pandemic in centuries, the recount demanded and paid for by President Trump will require dozens of workers to once again put themselves in harm’s way. 


The CDC and Wisconsin Department of Health Services recommends that we keep our Thanksgiving celebrations to those who live in our households. Read more about their recommendations and ways to keep your family and the rest of your community safe here.


Happy Thanksgiving!

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State Senator
27th District



$3 Million in Grants to Help Rural School Districts

Governor Evers and the Department of Administration announced $3 million in grants will be available for the purpose of providing technology infrastructure to improve the capacity of rural school districts and libraries to utilize technology for students and library patrons.​ TEACH (Technology for Education Achievement) Grants are for investments in a variety of equipment and services in addition to developing infrastructure such as cyber security, network, and data assessment to help school districts teach remotely. School Districts are able to apply for $30,000-$60,000 grants and libraries are able to apply for $5,000-$10,000. Click this link to learn more or apply for a TEACH Grant.


Completion of Verona Road

Verona Road (US 18/151) construction in Madison and Fitchburg is finally complete! The multi-year project began in 2013 and finished under budget and within two weeks of the expected completion date. More restoration and landscaping is still to come in 2021 but will not affect traffic. Watch the celebratory video here with Governor Evers, Wisconsin Department of Transportation Secretary-designee Craig Thompson and Federal Highway Administration Division Administrator Glenn Fulkerson.


 Energy Innovation Grant Program

The 2020 Energy Innovation Grant Program is accepting applications until January 22, 2021. This grant, from the Public Service Commission’s Office of Energy Innovation, funds projects that reduce energy consumption, increase clean energy and transportation technologies. This programs assists Wisconsin’s goal to be carbon-free by 2050.

Learn more.


2020 Wisconsin Student Holiday Ornament Theme Announced

Gov. Tony Evers, in a letter to educators and students, announced "Hope" as the theme for the 2020 holiday ornaments handmade by students this holiday season and distributed across Wisconsin. The governor's letter to Wisconsin educators with additional information and instructions regarding the 2020 holiday decorations can be found here. Each year, Wisconsin students are invited to create ornaments used to decorate a tree in the State Capitol Rotunda. This year, as Wisconsinites continue to navigate difficult times and the State Capitol remains closed due to the ongoing pandemic and efforts to keep Wisconsinites and visitors safe, the ornaments will be shared with veteran's homes, hospitals, and nursing homes to celebrate hope and the holiday season across the state.


Buy Local Evergreens

Before purchasing your winter holiday tree or wreath, be sure to check for invasive pests! The Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection would like to remind Wisconsinites to check their evergreen decorations for elongate hemlock scale (EHS), an invasive species found in eastern states and not native to Wisconsin. EHS can be identified by yellow or brown needles and small, oblong brown spots on the underside of needles. Making sure the decoration was grown in Wisconsin is a simple way to avoid the pest!

Read more.


COVID 19 Movie Theater Grant Program

Governor Evers and Secretary Joel Brennan of the Wisconsin Department of Administration announced the 54 grant award winners for the COVID-19 Movie Theater Grant Program.  The program will provide critical funds to assist movie theaters impacted by the pandemic. The award winners in the 27th District are the Al Ringling Theatre Friends, Inc. in Baraboo as well as movie theaters in Portage and Prairie du Sac.


Resources - 

During this difficult time it is worth reminding Wisconsinites that 211 exists to help when you don’t know where to turn. 211 is a resource managed by the United Way of Wisconsin. Call 2-1-1 or visit their website.

Office of Crime Victim Services

End Abuse Wisconsin 

National Domestic Violence Hotline: Call 1-800-799-7233, text LOVEIS to 22522, or go to for free and confidential support.

Disaster Distress Hotline 

Coping Resources for Kids and Parents Amidst COVID-19 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Veterans Crisis Line 

Vets for Warriors 

Military One Source 

Resilient Wisconsin

Department of Corrections Helpline: The call center can be reached by members of the public Monday through Friday from 7:45am–4:30pm at (608) 240-5700.

Wisconsin Farm Center 

24/7 Farmer Wellness Hotline

LGBTQ Crisis Line 

HopeLine Text Service 

Wisconsin Elder Abuse Hotline 

Wisconsin Addiction Recovery Helpline 


Looking for additional resources? If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to my office at Sen.Erpenbach@Legis.WI.Gov, or call (608) 266-6670. 


Contacting My Office

Feel free to contact me with any inquiries. Please visit my website for press releases and other Capitol updates.